Penetrating damp solution for Dorset pub

6 October 2011

When a Dorset pub/brewery chain realised they had a problem with damp penetration to one of their pub/restaurants they called upon their local Timberwise team at Timberwise Sherborne to provide the solution.

The Granary, Dorset

The Granary, Dorset

The penetrating damp problem

The period, brick built, former granary located on the River Frome in Dorset and overlooking the Purbeck Hills suffered from intermittent damp penetration to the gable (river facing) wall, during adverse weather conditions, resulting in internal damp staining adjacent to window and door openings and water dripping from the window heads.

The main building has walls of 450mm solid brick, although the main river facing gable had been replaced many years ago with a wall of cavity construction, formed using extremely porous bricks on a lime bedding mortar.

Following our investigation it was established that the cavity trays fitted over the door and window openings were partially blocked and also unable to cope with the extent of water ingress. Water was also breaching the cavities elsewhere (acceptable) although moisture was building up in the base of the wall, as this wall was formed from the old foundations.

The Timberwise solution to penetrating damp

Options considered and discussed were to (1) render the wall, although destroying the aesthetic appearance of the overall building (2) rebuild, too disruptive and expensive or (3) apply an external coating to prevent lateral damp penetration and clean the cavity trays.

Now we at Timberwise are always cautious when recommending or using external silicone type coatings, as they can be very short term, but more importantly can change the visual appearance of the building, the most common problem being the glazing effect of the masonry caused by the silicone ingredients and to this point we would have probably decided against the use of these types of product.

However, Timberwise have been trialing a new product, which is a masonry protection cream which is breathable and when applied by brush or roller will penetrate to a greater depth than conventional liquid systems, thus its effectiveness will not be affected by the erosion of the masonry surface over time and will prevent rain penetration through the pores of the brickwork for many years to come.

Having undertaken our initial survey of the wall and carried out random Masonry Absorbency Testing (MAT) we put forward a proposal to undertake initial on-site trials with the product, which proved successful and was followed by a full application to the entire gable end of the building, including the cleaning and reforming of the cavity trays and weep holes.

Following completion of the works we can report that the Masonry Cream has penetrated deep into the external brickwork with no visual change of appearance to the wall and improving the thermal efficiency of the masonry by keeping it dry.

Drinks all round to a job well done! The pictures below shows the work we carried out.

Masonry absorbency testing

Masononry absorbency testing being undertaken

1 hour after penetrating damp cream application

One of the test areas 1 hour after application of penetrating damp cream

The same wall 4 weeks later

The same test area 4 weeks following full application with no visual change to the walls appearance

Carefully cutting in around the pubs painted banner

Carefully cutting in around the pubs painted banner

What should I do if I think I have penetrating damp?

Dont panic is the first thing! Timberwise are experts is finding solutions to damp problems big and small be it penetrating damp, rising damp or condensation. To speak to your local team call 0800 288 8660 or to arrange a visit from one of our surveyors simply complete our on-line damp survey request form and we’ll contact you to arrange the survey.